NHL 14

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
NHL 14 Game Poster Image
This year's fun hockey sim shows a more aggressive game.

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 3 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about the rules of the National Hockey League and the tactics needed for the team to win games. Along with controlling the players on the ice -- passing, deking, checking, and shooting -- the game also teaches front-office management, including budgeting, drafting, and trading players to fit a NHL team's needs. This hockey sim does a good job of introducing kids to the sport and business of professional hockey.

Positive Messages

NHL 14 is a professional hockey simulation, allowing gamers to feel like they're playing, owning, or managing in the National Hockey League. The game encourages professionalism, adhering to rules, team play, exercise, city pride, and healthy competition.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The game is meant to deliver an authentic experience, therefore the players look and act like their real-life counterparts. While there might be a couple of bad apples in the bunch, most pro hockey players are good male role models.

Ease of Play

NHL 14 is really easy to control, utilizing the two analog sticks primarily for movement and hits, passes, and shots on goal.


Hockey is a contact sport but all players wear protective gear and helmets. That said, there is fighting in NHL 14, just as there is in the real NHL. The game lets you exchange punches with another player in a kind of fighting minigame. The game is also more aggressive than past NHL games, allowing for heavier hits and showing them upclose.


As with previous versions of the NHL hockey game, there are many commercial brands viewable in the rink, on the billboards, illuminated signs, and jumbotron. This includes branding for Tim Hortons, Reebok, Bauer, CCM, Vaughn, and other companies.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that NHL 14 is a pro hockey simulation that has some violence -- just like the real sport -- including body checks and fistfights on the ice. The game also supports full voice support in multiplayer matches, therefore online gamers might hear swearing or other inappropriate words or phrases.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byryans3 December 31, 2014

It should be 8 and older!

I see kids that are 6 who play this game! It is a very fun and well made game, beautiful graphics!! :)
Parent of a 13-year-old Written byThegoodReviewer November 13, 2013

It really captures hockey in it´s true form!

I think it´s an awesome game for kids that like sports games. There is the possibility of fighting on the ice rink but there´s no blood or anything.
The graphic... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old October 15, 2014

Best NHL Game so far

This the best game yet. EA Sports totally nailed it. The graphics are extremely good and the gameplay is improved. The best part about the game is the new Live... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byray_scanten82 November 5, 2013

Is chess all about violence?

Actually, it's not aggressive, but just more competitive. Sport games, if not played on keyboards or game pads but "active" controllers like Kine... Continue reading

What's it about?

Another year, another NHL hockey video game from EA Sports. As with past games in the series, NHL 14 lets you play as or against your favorite teams and players from the league, but this year adds a few new features including a more aggressive game with bigger hits (thanks to NHL Collision Physics), a fighting mechanic powered by EA Sports' Enforcer Engine (powered by Fight Night tech), one-touch dekes, and other slick moves. This year's game also introduces the "Live the Life" mode, a refreshed version of the "Be a Pro" career mode, where every decision you make on or off the ice can shape your career as a hockey star; plus there's a retro NHL 94 Anniversary mode. This PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 sports game also supports multiplayer matches over the Internet or side-by-side on the same television.

Is it any good?

As with most annual sports games, it's tough to see a major difference every year. Unless you're a huge fan of the franchise and want the latest team rosters and new features, you might want to wait every 2 or 3 years before buying into a new NHL game to really see major changes. This year's version is it's a faster and more aggressive game and the controls have been tweaked to offer greater dexterity and movement (for example, the left stick and one button lets you easily deke opponents). While it's a great idea, the NHL 94 Anniversary mode isn't as much fun to play despite the old-school graphics, 16-bit sounds, and faster gameplay. Overall, NHL 14 isn't a bad hockey game at all -- in fact, it's fun, good looking, and has a number of solo and multiplayer modes -- but it's just not very different than last year's game, despite the marketing efforts to convince you otherwise.

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